Saturday, April 1, 2017

Tyrone Power's Turkey Stuffing

Tyrone Power's Turkey Stuffing

1 quart chestnuts
1 pint breadcrumbs
1/4 cup butter, chicken fat or lard
1 tsp. salt
1 egg, well beaten
1/4 cup chopped celery
2 tsps. poultry seasoning

Make a gash in each chestnut. Place in an iron skillet with 1 tablespoon butter, and shake over hot flame for a few minutes. Place chestnuts in oven for 10 minutes. Then remove shells and skins. Cover the blanched chestnuts with boiling salted water and cook until tender. Strain and put through a ricer. Add rest of ingredients and mix well.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Eleanor Powell's Sweet Potato Croquettes

Eleanor Powell's Sweet Potato Croquettes

First, boil 4 large sweet potatoes in their skins until soft. Peel while still soft and mash smooth.

Season with:
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Pinch of salt
2 tablespoonfuls finely chopped moist shredded coconut
Yolk of one egg

Whip all together until very stiff and set aside to cool. When cool, shape into croquettes--cylindrical shape is excellent.

Dip croquettes into flour very lightly, then into beaten egg, then roll well in a mixture of half fine breadcrumbs and half finely chopped coconut. Fry in deep fat until crisp and serve hot garnished with either parsley or thin slices of lemon.

Temperature of the frying fat should be 450 degrees, if you have a fat thermometer. If not, remember 450 degrees is really hot.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Recipes by Elizabeth Post: Artichoke Bottoms and Spinach Au Gratin; Charcoal Broiled Whole Fillet

Elizabeth Post's Artichoke Bottoms and Spinach Au Gratin

2 small cans (or jars) artichoke bottoms, drained
3 pkgs. chopped frozen spinach
Boiling salted water
3/4 cup heavy cream
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup grated Swiss cheese

1. Saute artichoke bottoms slowly in butter; set aside.

2. Cook spinach in boiling salted water according to package instructions. Drain well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour cream over cooked spinach and mix well.

3. Place artichoke hearts in bottom of fireproof dish; top with creamed spinach; sprinkle cheese over the top. Cook uncovered in preheated 350 degree F. oven for 15 minutes. If necessary run under broiler to brown cheese. Serve 6-8.

Elizabeth Post's Charcoal Broiled Whole Fillet

Tenderloin weighing 4 to 4 1/2 lbs.
2 cups red wine (or wine vinegar)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp. thyme
1 tsp. ground black pepper
1 tsp. salt
1/4 lb. soft butter
Minced fresh chives

1. Have the butcher remove all the fat. Prepare marinade by combining red wine (or wine vinegar) with olive oil, thyme, salt and pepper. Marinate fillet at room temperature several hours, turning several times.

2. Use electric rotisserie or charcoal briquettes. (When the coals are ready, lay the fillet on the grill, taking care to keep the small end away from the hottest part of the fire.) Turn fillet frequently while meat is
cooking. Baste several times with marinade.

3. Cook until meat has reached desired doneness (about 25 minutes if a fairly hot bed of coals are used.) To check for doneness, insert the point of a small sharp knife into the thick and thin ends. (The thicker end will be juicy and rare, the thinner end medium to well done at the tip.) Remove fillet to heated platter to carve. Rub well with softened butter, sprinkle well with chopped chives. Slice each piece diagonally across the grain. Rub carved slices in the mixture of melting butter and juices that ooze from the meat as it is cut. Spoon some of this liquid over each guest's serving. Serve with thick slices of French (or Italian bread) and a mixed green salad and vegetable. Serves 8-10 people generously.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Sidney Poitier's Corn and Okra Soup with Lobster

Sidney Poitier's Corn and Okra Soup with Lobster

6 ears fresh Florida corn
2 small live lobsters, each weighing about 1 1/4 pounds
2 cups water
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (or bacon fat)
1 large onion, sliced
1/2 clove garlic, pressed
1 green pepper, minced
2 stalks celery, chopped
1/4 teaspoon thyme leaves
3 large ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped
2 cups liquid (water, clam juice)
1/2 cup sliced carrots
1 bay leaf
1 whole red pepper
1/2 pound okra, chopped
1/2 pound scallops
1/2 pound jumbo shrimp, deveined, cut in half
Salt and pepper to taste

Remove husks and silk from corn. Cut kernels off cob (makes about 4 cups); set aside. Heat water and salt to boiling point in large kettle. Add lobsters; return to boiling point. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes. Remove lobsters; set aside to cool. Reserve lobster stock. Heat oil (or bacon fat) in large stock pot; saute onion, garlic, green pepper, celery and thyme leaves in oil (or bacon fat) until vegetables are limp.

Add tomatoes, cook and stir over low fire until tomatoes become mushy. Add lobster stock, about 2 more cups liquid (water or clam juice), carrots, bay leaf, red pepper; cover and cook 15-20 minutes. Remove lid. Add okra, reserved corn, scallops, shrimp, salt, pepper to taste; cook 10 minutes. Meanwhile, remove lobster meat from shell, cut into bite-size pieces, add to soup just before serving. Serve alone or with hot buttered Johnny cake.

Thoughts: Sidney's soup, known simply as "okra soup" in the Bahamas, is made in many ways. Traditionally, conch and crabs are used for the soup (but they are sometimes difficult to obtain in the U.S.) with a medley of fresh vegetables, ranging from cassava, yams, potatoes and cabbage, to snap beans. Fresh thyme from the branch are added to the soup and corn on the cob is cut in quarters and thrown in the pot. Leftover chicken can be added. American cooks may substitute hard-shell crabs for lobster. If desired, add about 2 cups canned or frozen crab or lobster meat and just before serving, heat through. Chicken broth gives soup a wonderful flavor, complementing the corn and okra. Either Bahamian or American style, the Poitier soup is hearty and delicious.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Recipes by Ingrid Pitt: Beef Roulades; Suckling Pig

Ingrid Pitt's Beef Roulades

2 lbs. top grade beef round, cut one-half inch thick
Small clove garlic, optional
Salt, freshly ground pepper
3/4 cup cooked ground meat (can be leftover beef, veal or chicken)
1/4 cup breadcrumbs soaked in few tsps. milk
Handful minced parsley
Medium-size yellow onion, chopped
Small sour pickle, chopped
2 hard-cooked eggs, chopped
Pinch allspice
1 small ripe tomato, peeled and chopped (or few tbsps. tomato paste)
About 1 1/2 cups dry red wine (or cranberry juice)

1. Cut meat into six pieces each measuring about 3 by 4 inches; pound steak to flatten. Rub meat lightly with garlic; season with salt and pepper.

2. Prepare filling by mixing ground leftover meat with breadcrumbs, parsley, onion, pickle, eggs, allspice, salt and pepper to taste. Spread mixture on each steak; roll and tie each steak with cord.

3. Grease bottom of a large skillet (or Dutch oven) with butter (or vegetable oil). Brown rolls quickly on both sides. Transfer roulades to baking dish (or use Dutch oven), deglazing pan with a little water. Add to casserole. Mix tomato (or tomato paste) with wine (or cranberry juice); pour over rolls in casserole. Cover, cook in preheated 350 degree F. oven about 45 mins. (or until meat is tender). Remove roulades to warm platter. Make gravy from pan drippings, thickening with seasoned flour if needed. Serve roulades with an assortment of hot vegetables (glazed pearl onions, butter-browned mushroom caps, baby carrots, cauliflower flowerets, new peas or potato puffs). Serves 6.

Ingrid Pitt's Suckling Pig

For the dressing:
5 lbs. sage-flavored pork sausage
1/2 cup chopped toasted almonds
6 tbsps. pickled walnuts, chopped (available in gourmet shops)
6 cups toasted bread crumbs
3 beaten eggs
1/2 tsp. ground thyme
Ground sage to taste
Salt, freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Saute sausage over low heat until crumbly and moist, stir often. Drain, discard excess fat; cool sausage. Add almonds, pickled walnuts, bread crumbs, eggs, thyme, sage, salt and pepper. Use sage, salt and pepper sparingly.

For the pig:
One cleaned, drawn suckling pig, weighing about 13 lbs.
Freshly ground pepper
Half of a cut lemon
One stick of melted butter

1. Scald and scrub suckling pig; dry well inside and out with paper towels. Rub inside cavity with salt, pepper and sage.

2. Stuff cavity lightly with dressing but avoid packing as dressing swells as it cooks. With sharp instrument, punch holes one inch apart through the stomach flaps. Close opening by sewing drawing thread through the holes shoelace-fashion.

3. Truss pig by pulling front feet forward, tieing with soft cord. Pull hind feet backward if there's oven room (or pull legs forward). Fill mouth with ball of crushed aluminum foil to hold open during roasting. Curl tall; secure in place; cover ears with caps made from aluminum foil. Rub entire surface of skin with cut lemon; season outside well with salt and freshly ground pepper. Place pig on large sheet of heavyweight aluminum foil; overlap across back; fold up around head and ears. Place on baking sheet; bake in preheated 450 degrees F. oven about 2 1/2 hrs. (or until meat is tender). Reduce oven temperature to 400 degrees F.; open aluminum foil cover, pull back edges so pig is exposed.

4. Baste well with melted butter. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees F. and roast about 1 hr. longer. During last 30 mins. remove caps from ears and tail to crisp and brown skin; baste often during the last hour.

5. Carefully slide pig onto serving platter; remove lacing and ties. Remove ball of foil from mouth; replace with small ripe red apple (or lemon). Decorate eyes with raisins, prunes or cranberries; string a necklace of greens (parsley or fern) or fruit (kumquats or cranberries) around the neck.

6. To serve hot, carve pig starting at center, cutting down through. Make gravy from pan drippings or serve with side dish of lemon chutney as desired. Serves 8.

7. To serve cold, allow pig to cool completely then brush with glaze made from brown sugar and butter (or gelatin dissolved in water). Decorate platter with turnip roses (made by carving peeled turnips into rose shapes and soaking them overnight in cold water colored with yellow or red fruit coloring), parsley, and tomato wedges. Slice as directed above. Dressing is excellent hot or cold.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Recipes by Walter Pidgeon: Ham and Egg Pie; Romaine Lettuce Salad; Strawberry Crepes

Walter Pidgeon's Ham and Egg Pie

4 eggs, beaten
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup milk
2 cups cooked ham, diced
1 cup grated cheese

Beat eggs slightly and add pepper, baking powder, milk, ham, and cheese. Pour ham mixture into a 9-inch unbaked pie shell. Bake in hot oven (425 degrees F.) 35 minutes, or until knife inserted comes out clean. Serve with grilled tomatoes or a crisp green salad.

Walter Pidgeon's Romaine Lettuce Salad

Crisp romaine lettuce cut into small pieces, mixed with mayonnaise dressing into which has been mixed cream cheese. Serve chilled with tomato biscuits. (Use tomato juice for liquid in making biscuits.)

Walter Pidgeon's Strawberry Crepes

1 scant cup all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. sugar
1 cup milk
1 cup water
2 large eggs
3 tbsps. melted butter
(room temperature) softened sweet butter
1 quart cleaned, hulled strawberries
powdered sugar

Put flour and sugar in bowl. Mix milk with water and gradually add to flour-sugar mixture, stirring constantly until batter is free of lumps. Break eggs into the batter, beat until well blended. Add melted butter, stir well. Cover and let stand at least two hours before using. Mix well before using. If batter is thick, add a little water to thin it down. Use five- or six-inch French crepe pan (or cast-iron one-egg skillet). Rub crepe pan (or skillet) lightly with thin film of softened sweet butter. Heat crepe pan (or skillet) over moderately high heat until almost smoking. Pour about 2 1/2 tablespoons batter into pan tilting pan back and forth so batter spreads evenly over the surface. Reduce heat slightly. Bake the crepe until lightly browned and bubbles begin to form. Turn crepe with fingers or spatula, browning on reverse side about 30 seconds. Remove crepe to heated platter. Repeat process, keeping batter well-mixed, until all the remaining batter is used. Keep crepes warm in slow oven (or place in covered dish over a kettle of simmering water). To serve, spread with sweetened strawberries, roll up jelly roll fashion (or with powdered sugar) and top with dollop of chilled whipped cream. Makes about 20 crepes.

Crepes must be carefully made. For best results, keep a special crepe pan (or skillet) for preparing the dessert. As water causes sticking, never wash pan. Clean by wiping pan carefully with paper toweling. Fillings or trimmings can range from plain to fancy. Use fruit in season (blueberries, raspberries, nectarines or peaches), cooked fruits (apple slices or peeled, halved bananas sauteed in butter) or spread with peach marmalade, apricot jam, apple butter or wild strawberry preserves.

Gourmets may prefer the more classic treatment of crepe, suzette-style. Spread the baked crepes with Suzette sauce (made by combining two egg yolks, rind and juice of large naval orange, scant cup powdered sugar, good pinch salt and two sticks sweet butter cooked in the top of a double boiler until thickened) or marron butter cream topped off with an orange liqueur (Grand Marnier or Cointreau) sauce.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Recipes by Molly Picon: Pesach Farfel Candy; Pesach Matzo Brei; Pesach Potato Knishes

Molly Picon's Pesach Farfel Candy

1 lb. strained clover honey
1 cup sugar
1 tbsp. ginger
1 lb. matzo farfel
1 cup chopped nuts

1. Boil honey and sugar until candy thermometer registers "soft crack" stage. Add ginger, farfel and nuts. Turn out on board dampened with ice water.

2. Wet hands with ice water, spread candy evenly to 3/4-inch thickness.

3. Cool slightly. Cut into squares or diamonds with sharp knife.

Thoughts: Molly says, "Farfel makes a nice nosh for young and older children."

Molly Picon's Pesach Matzo Brei

4 matzos, broken into bits
3 eggs
1 tbsp. sugar
Salt to taste

1. Pour boiling water over matzo bits. Drain. Wring out matzos with hands. Beat eggs and mix with matzos. Add sugar, salt to taste.

2. Fry in chicken fat (or margarine) until nice and brown. Serve for breakfast with strained honey or marmalade.

Molly Picon's Pesach Potato Knishes

For the liver mixture:

2 medium-sized onions, minced
3 tbsps. chicken fat (or margarine)
1 lb. chicken livers
Salt and pepper to taste
A few drops of lemon juice

1. Saute onion in chicken fat (or margarine) until transparent; remove from pan. Cook chicken livers quickly until they begin to brown.

2. Remove chicken livers from pan, cool slightly. Chop livers, mix with onions, salt and pepper to taste. Add a few drops of lemon juice for moisture and flavor.

For the potato mixture:

2 lbs. peeled, boiled and mashed potatoes
Salt and pepper to taste
3 tbsps. chicken fat
1/3 cup matzo meal

1. Combine mashed potatoes, salt, pepper, chicken fat and matzo meal. Cool mixture 1/2 hour before using.

2. Use large heaping tablespoon of potato mixture to form balls. Make a depression in center of each ball with finger. Put 1 tbsp. chopped liver in depression. Cover, patting potato over the liver.

3. Place knishes on well greased baking sheet (use chicken fat or margarine). Bake in preheated 375 degrees F. oven until lightly browned. Serve hot as side dish with roast brisket or chicken. Serves 6-8.